These days, our private information is up for grabs and going to the highest bidders. Collectors are targeting us with advertisements in our inboxes and social media accounts. Worse, websites like Facebook clearly affect lives on and off our computers and phones.
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Social media is great for connecting people, sharing news and information, and giving your grandmother the opportunity to air her political opinions unfettered. Unfortunately, its anonymity and widespread reach makes it an easy way for people to spread hate, and since Donald Trump’s election in 2016, social media users have noticed a worrisome increase in online hate speech.
This week, Instagram rolled out a new feature that allows you to post an image across multiple accounts, or even post an image on more than one account at the same time. Though that sounds like a niche feature created to help power users, there are plenty of people who juggle multiple Instagram feeds: Users who keep public and private feeds, side accounts for their pets, and other photography side projects.
And yes, in the age of influencer culture, the number of people who use Instagram for both business and pleasure is only rising.
The revelation this past week that Facebook has been sharing what you do on the site with other companies like Microsoft and Amazon has led a number of us to start considering (perhaps not for the first time) deleting Facebook and other apps owned by the company like Instagram and WhatsApp.
If you use Instagram, chances are you've already started to see your friends posting collages of their "top nine" photos of the year. The first year I started noticing these I spent a solid half hour at least trying to figure out where to find the collage within Instagram's app. Spoiler: you're not going to find it in there. It has the look and feel of a built-in Instagram feature, but it's not.
When my son approached his teenage years, I braced myself for the inevitable behaviours teens often display. I waited for the eye rolling and the mouthing off. I prepared for door slamming and grunting. I steeled myself for years of silence with a moody teen. I’d often heard parents of teens joke that “you get your kid back” when they head off to college.
While Facebook has faced massive scrutiny over the last year when it comes to privacy and security, their other major social network, Instagram, has managed to stay clear of the spotlight. Until now. Over the weekend, it was revealed that a new security flaw could have inadvertently exposed Instagram passwords to public view.
Earlier this year I finally fell down the rabbit hole that is Instagram Stories, and now I spend way too much time on Instagram. This week, the app started rolling out a new feature to combat Insta-addiction, a “Your Activity” tracker that shows you how much time you spend in the app, and lets you set limits to help reduce the number of hours you pour into scrolling you feed each day.
Breaking up is hard to do, especially when there are numerous public profiles where we can check in on everything our ex does. Looking at how the person you dated is filling all their days without you is a bad idea, but often impossible to resist.
Fortunately, there's a way to surreptitiously keep tabs on them without bumming yourself out in the process. Here's how.
I'm a huge fan of night modes. Night/Dark modes are easier on your eyes and your device's battery, and frankly just look better, in my opinion. This week I came across a Chrome extension that adds a dark mode to Instagram on the web. Called "Night Mode for Instagram" the extension transforms your Instagram feed into something a little easier to look at.
Earlier this year I embraced the greatness that is Instagram stories. While I'll typically spend a good deal of time trying to capture the perfect image with the perfect caption to put on regular Instagram, with Instagram stories I'm willing to post pretty much anything. When given the choice I also like to add stickers and GIFs to what I post, sometimes at a level that (wrong) people might call excessive.
The blue check mark we all crave on social media platforms is often mysteriously difficult to achieve. How do people get it? Twitter allowed people to submit themselves for a time, but that system is currently suspended. However, Instagram is giving it a whirl.